Must know practical nutrition tips for healthier lives from birth to death – Roger French
Health Stronghold Podcast – Episode 7
Welcome and thank you for listening to Episode 7. Go to previous Podcast
In here you will receive some amazing ready to implement tips on practical nutrition from a man that can reel it all off by heart.
Roger French knows his stuff, that is clear and in this open interview he doesn’t hold back in passing his know-how to you. Enjoy it, take notes, and you’ll probably want to use the transcript to look things up later.
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Transcript of the interview with Roger French filled with practical nutrition examples for a healthier life from birth to death
Copyright Patrick van der Burght 2019.
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Patrick: Welcome, everybody. Thank you for joining us. I’m here with Roger French in Sydney, Australia. Roger French is the full-time health director of the Natural Health Society and has been doing this for 35 years. He’s been a member of the Natural Health Society of Australia for 50 years, and before that he was the manager at the closely affiliated Hopewood Health Retreat in Wallacia, New South Wales.
Patrick: Roger started with a diploma in agriculture, then moved on to a bachelor in civil engineering, and then swerved to a diploma in nutrition, which has, over time, turned him into quite an authority in this subject. I’m delighted to spend some time with you here today and thank you for sharing some of your time. I’ve always found you a wonderful source of why this natural approach to health and what people could do. So I’m going to be asking you some questions, I’d love you to elaborate on a few things and give those who have joined us some hands-on tips, especially in this nutrition area, of what they could do, how they should, and those sorts of things.
Roger: Okay, I’m pleased to do that.
Patrick: Wonderful. So Roger, yeah, I guess a broad question, why natural health?
Roger: There is a big move now in the health community to go over the lifestyle methods of health and lifestyle causes of illness. Now, modern medicine is still totally dependent on drugs, on medications, most of which are toxic to some degree which is why they almost all have side effects. And the drugs are really treating the symptoms, they are not dealing the underlying cause of illness. They’re treating the symptoms.
Roger: So in modern medicine, using the methods that doctors are bound to use. They can go into lifestyle to some degree, but they’re still bound to use their medications. So for those of us in alternative health or what is the original health for millennia ago, we look at the original causes of illness and instead of treating symptoms, treat the underlying cause and facilitate the conditions that enable the body to heal itself so that the symptoms then fade away because they’re no longer needed.
Roger: The basis of Natural Health, which was set up in the society when it was founded in 1960 as a not-for-profit organization, where our sole focus is what is best for people without any vested interest, having anything to do with steering our principles and practices. There’s been so much research, even in 1960 when we were setup there was already so much research that the lifestyle methods being setup then are still 100% intact today. The million studies since … probably there’ve been hundreds of thousands, maybe even something like a million studies relating nutrition and nutrients in food to health and wellbeing, are simply endorsing what we set up in the beginning, basically. There’s more being learned about why things are so good, but it is still the basic nutritional approach to lifestyle that was set up 60 years ago.
Roger: So Natural Health is doing what the world is coming to now and has been doing it for a long time. Medical ecologists said something about 45 years ago that pinned it down beautifully, they said virtually all health problems in Australia today are diseases of civilization, which means diseases of lifestyle. Which is really good news, we can change our lifestyle.
Patrick: What was that percentage you said?
Roger: Um, virtually all.
Patrick: Virtually all.
Roger: With rare exceptions. There are a few genetic diseases like hemochromatosis, but they’re very rare. With the rare exceptions, our problems are to do with lifestyle and we can change our lifestyle. We can’t change our genes, although we can improve the way they work, actually, it’s called epigenetics. And we can’t avoid germs, I believe there’s a billion viruses in a teaspoon of water, but with healthy lifestyle our bodies can function beautifully.
Patrick: You’ve mentioned to me in the past that you have these three basic principles for natural health, can you elaborate on those?
Roger: The three principles that tell us a lot, and I think they’re very, very encouraging to know. Firstly, good health is the normal state for the human body and will continue from birth until death at a ripe old age, unless the cause of disease is built into our lifestyle. In other words, there is no illness caused by age alone. There’s more illness as people get older because our lifestyle is full of causes of illness, it’s far from what our bodies are designed for. Secondly, infectious disease is not primarily an attack on the body by a microorganism, a virus or bacteria or protozoa or fungus … protozoa’s a … malaria, for example. It’s part of the body’s defenses at work, so when we get a cold or a dose of flu, the body has brought that on when it needs it as a detox process, and all that mucus coming away is washing toxins out of the system.
Roger: So there is some quite top scientists in the planet who made it clear from their research that germs cannot and do not attack healthy tissue, that they are the secondary agents of illness, not the primary cause, which does give us some measure of control. And thirdly, the human body, given the right conditions, is the perfect self-healing mechanism. And if we do give our bodies the right conditions, which is absolutely fundamental in natural health teachings so that we know what we’re dealing with, then our bodies can heal from … not everything, but many, many conditions.
Patrick: Okay. So with your background and experience, what would you tell people … what are areas that they need to look at and improve on?
Roger: Well, lifestyle has four major aspects, although these days we’re adding a fifth. The big four are what we put in our mouths in terms of food and drink, how we handle stress, which is not the events around us, it’s how we react so we do have some measure of control over stress. I know it’s hard to laugh if the bank’s foreclosing on your house, but we do have some measure of control to … and thirdly, adding regular physical activity to … because activity increases the heart rate, strengthens the heart, flushes the system out, the breathing brings in more oxygen and the body detoxifies to some degree. And fourthly, minimizing exposure to man-made chemicals. That’s a big one, and we’re living in a sea of chemicals. Even in 1985 when Rachel Carson wrote Silent Spring, the biologist Rachel Carson, she said that we are living in a sea of chemicals and she traced those chemicals through to cancer, she traced … proposed a mechanism through. And I suspect, and this is not proven Patrick, but I suspect that most cancers are … have as a basis a combination of man-made chemicals.
Roger: And there’s a big problem with chemicals called synergism. Chemicals are supposed to be tested by the government, that they’re not carcinogenic, they’re not cancer causing or they won’t cause other diseases, or they’re very low level compared to what would do those things. But what cannot be tested for is if two reasonably safe chemicals, and there can be hundreds in a meal, say, in food, interact together to produce a chemical that’s 100 times as toxic as either of the originals. So we can actually have extremely toxic chemicals in our body even though the original chemicals were reasonably benign. And synergism can never be tested for because out of the tens of thousands of man-made chemicals released into the environment and into our bodies, there are billions of combinations, can never be tested for.
Roger: So that’s the big four, and one we’re adding these days since there’s become … oh in just the last decade, an increasing awareness of the importance of getting vitamin D from the sun. Now immediately people jump up or specialists jump up, ‘but what about cancer?’ The evidence is fairly clear that if we have the right amount of exposure, which is not very much, to direct sunlight on as much of our bodies as possible … never on the face, always have a hat or shelter our faces, then our bodies will get the vitamin D they need. And when we have enough vitamin D the body switches off production, it’s just brilliant. If we take vitamin D supplements then there’s now way of knowing how much is too much, except by testing your body for vitamin D levels and checking that you haven’t had too much. Because vitamin D, like the other fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K, can store in our fat and can build up in our bodies.
Roger: The water soluble vitamins, the B complex and vitamin C mainly, are eliminated if we don’t need them, they just go straight out with the urine. So with sun-bathing we get the right amount of vitamin D without getting too much, we can’t get toxicity, but we do know to make sure we don’t overdo it. And the bottom line is don’t sunburn, the evidence seems to be sunburn is the danger. So as long as we get enough sun, and initially it might be a couple of minutes, and we slowly build up with a very light tan without ever burning we should get our vitamin D … it might be 15-20 minutes in Sydney in summer, longer in winter. Someone who has a dark skin … dark skinned people are designed for the tropics, that’s where they tend to live, Asian and Aboriginal people, and they have a lot of protection from the ultraviolet rays of the sun so they need longer in the sun to get their vitamin D.
Patrick: Very interesting.
Roger: So they’re the big four, what we put in our mouths, how we handle stress, regular physical activity, minimizing exposure to man-made chemicals, and the big fifth, getting vitamin D from the sun safely.
Roger: And we do spell out … in my book we do spell out, in the chapter on sunshine, how to do it safely so the advice is readily available.
Patrick: Okay. Now nutrition, I know you can go on for a long time on. I don’t want to keep that from those that have joined us, so what can you share…
Roger: Shall I go for an hour or just half an hour?
Patrick: Um, half an hour, 45 minutes would be good.
Roger: So the first thing is that in spite of the fact that some doctors or … some used to say it doesn’t matter what you eat, it’s the most amazing thing to hear. We are made of what we eat, plus the oxygen we breathe in, plus the water we take in. In our bodies there are about a million chemical reactions every second … you know, a million chemical reactions every second, in this body. That’s biochemistry, that’s the chemistry of life, and those reactions all depend for their raw materials on what we put in our mouths plus oxygen, so what we eat is critically important. And over the recent half century or more, there’ve been hundreds of thousands of studies as I said earlier on nutrition, and they really spell out the finesse with which our bodies relate to what we eat. And I often wonder how people who don’t give a damn what they eat and put a lot of junk in their mouths, how their bodies stay alive and keep functioning. But of course they eventually become very painful with disease.
Roger: So what we put in our mouths is very fundamental to health, food and drink. And it’s fairly well understood now what our bodies need to be adequately nourished without causing harm.
Patrick: Okay. So can you elaborate on that.
Patrick: Take it away!
Roger: So, the foundation of balanced nutrition is to have a balance between acid forming food and alkaline forming food. Now, it’s not getting into chemistry, the alkaline forming foods are those that have a preponderance of the alkaline minerals, in order of quantity potassium, magnesium and calcium. The first two we wee away every day, so we need constant supplies, calcium our bodies tend to recycle if they can. And the acidic minerals that balance those alkaline minerals, for which we need a balance, are potassium, chlorine and sulfur. And some foods have a preponderance for the alkaline minerals, some have a preponderance for the acidic minerals, we need a balance. And the foods that have a predominance of the alkaline minerals are the fresh vegetables and fruits, fresh veggies and fruits. Preferably raw, the minerals are more available in raw fruits and veggies.
Roger: The foods that have a predominance of the acidic minerals are basically all the rest, the foods that are concentrated with protein, with carbohydrates and fat. There are some exceptions in those concentrated foods, for example almonds, which are quite concentrated protein foods with protein, carbohydrate and a lot of oil, perfect oil for us, they are actually alkaline forming ’cause they’re so high in minerals. But in general, fruit and veggies are alkaline forming, the rest are acid forming. Now, it so happens that to get a balance, we need to recognize the fact that the fruits and veggies are mostly water. You know, for example bananas and grapes are about 80 per cent water, lettuce and watermelon are about 95 per cent water.
Roger: So to allow for that water content we need much greater weights of fruits and veggies to balance the fairly concentrated … concentrated foods.
Patrick: That makes sense.
Roger: The ratio’s about three to one.
Patrick: Three to one?
Roger: In a day’s eating we need, by weight, three quarters of our food to be fresh veggies or fruit, or salads, or lightly steamed veggies. Or each meal … each to the three meals based on one of those would do. And then a quarter of that weight in total to be the concentrated food giving us protein, carbohydrate and fat. And if we get that right it covers a multitude of sins, because that is the absolute foundation of balanced nutrition, that high intake of fresh veggies and fruits. Now, we also need protein, carbohydrate and fat. We don’t need large amounts, and the guidelines that we adopted 60 years ago which have … well, 58 years ago, which are tried and true and have certainly worked well for me. I know I’m not Mr. Australia, but I’m free of health problems and that’s what I’m concerned about.
Roger: We need a modest amount of protein-rich food, something in the order of 100-150 grams a day in total. Now the protein foods are, as most people might recognize, meat, cheese and eggs. But today there’s a big awareness, a growing awareness as we’ve taught since the beginning, that plant-based sources are superior. The plant-based protein-rich foods are nuts and legumes and seeds, seeds means sunflower, sesame, pepitas, those green Mexican pumpkin seeds, and flax seeds. Flax seeds are very high in Omega 3, so we don’t need salmon for our Omega 3. So they’re the protein foods, and plant-based is superior.
Roger: Meat is basically protein and fat, and not a lot of minerals and zero fiber. Nuts, for example, which have been found to quite spectacularly reduce the risk of heart attack by about eight per cent, just having nuts one day instead of meat for your protein. Nuts are basically protein, carbohydrate, oil and a lot of minerals and vitamins and fiber. So they have everything we need, but as long as they’re balanced by the water-rich veggies and fruits. So nuts, legumes and seeds are really good foods for us. The legumes are interesting, there are a number of them … for people who have a triglyceride problem, if the doctor’s done a blood measurement, said you’ve got a triglyceride problem, that just means fat.
Roger: Triglyceride is the technical name for fat, so if a person has a triglyceride problem, there’s too much fat in their bloodstream so they need to cut down the fat-rich food. So almonds temporally would be too high in fat, but there are four legumes which are about ten or five per cent fat; lentils, kidney beans, chickpeas and lima beans, and they are very low in fat. So they have as much proteins as … pretty well as meat, but don’t have the fat so they’re actually quite good if there is a particular problem. Otherwise a balance of nuts, legumes and seeds through the week is ideal.
Roger: Now, recognizing that about 89 per cent of the population like their meat, we don’t have our heads buried in the sand, I’m happy to explain that people can do reasonably well having their protein from the animal kingdom providing they comply with two requirements. One, don’t over-eat any protein, too much protein is very tough on the liver and kidneys, and it’s no wonder we have an epidemic of kidney stones. So keep to about 100-150 grams for an adult of average size in a day of total protein food. Nuts, legumes, seeds, eggs and cheese and flesh foods, flesh foods including fish. Secondly, recognize that all animal product contains zero fiber. Fiber is the definition of a plant, so ant animal product has zero fiber, so balance the meat or cheese or eggs with three times it’s weight of vegetables, or fruit for that matter.
Roger: So typically if you like a couple of chops for dinner…
Roger: Have, like, 100 grams, 120 grams, have three or 400 grams of vegetables. Sometimes our salad in the evening is 500 grams. My wife and I have a big vegetable salad and we regard that as a kind of insurance against nasty diseases, well it’s a big part of it anyway, not the total. Then we need some carbohydrate food, or we like it anyway, people like bread, people like potatoes, that’s fine. Make our total carbohydrate the equivalent of about three or four slices of bread in a day. So that’s about 100-120 grams, which would be a couple of medium sized potatoes, or three or four slices of bread, or a serving of rice. So the carbohydrate-rich foods are the starchy vegetables that are really good foods, don’t worry about negative press for potatoes, they’re a really good food, high in potassium just under the skin. Steam them or bake them in their skins and just peel off that transparent skin on the surface, get the minerals just underneath.
Roger: So potato, pumpkin, sweet potato are really good vegetables. The yellow color of potato and of pumpkin is a powerful antioxidant, beta-carotene, the same as in carrots and extremely good for us and protective.
Roger: The starchy concentrated foods are the grains, wheat, rye, barley, oats, millet, buckwheat and rice. Now the first four have gluten and they … but particularly wheat, and a lot of people are sensitive to gluten, and my body doesn’t like it. So I don’t eat a lot of wheat and bread, I have some no problem but I don’t have a lot. So it’s probably a good idea to make sure people have a variety, so some wheat-based bread et cetera … we can get breads made from other things, bread made from rice, bread made from quinoa which was a food of the Incas, a very valuable protein seed. So try and vary it around and get a variety from wheat, rye, millet, barley, oats. The last three have much less gluten, and then rice and buckwheat, millet, have zero gluten and they’re quite good.
Roger: And then we do need fat, but it so happens that all our protein foods contain fat so we don’t actually have to serve fat onto our dish. You know, meat contains fat, we all know that, in some cases we’re told trim off the outside. Nuts, almonds are 54 per cent fat in the form of oil, which is exactly the kind of oil we need.
Roger: Almonds. Sunflower seeds are 45 per cent fat … oil, again, sunflower oil. Sunflower oil extracted can go rancid, it is not such a good oil at all, it can be a problem but in the seed, as long as the seeds are reasonably fresh it’s a perfect oil for us. Very high in oil, the most fat-rich natural foods there are, are Brazil nuts, walnuts, pecan nuts, macadamia nuts and pine nuts. They’re over 70 per cent oil which is spectacular, but again it’s exactly the kind of oil we need and as long as we keep that intake down to about 80 or 100 grams a day, which would be enough protein food for us, we’ll get some good oil without having too much. Now if we like extra oil in the form of oil for salad dressing, like coconut oil or flax oil-
Roger: Which must be kept cold, never heat flax oil ever, it goes rancid so easily. But as long as it’s not rancid, oxidized, and it’s fresh oil it is really good for us. So it’s a case of the good is really good, but if it’s oxidized it’s really bad.
Roger: We can have a salad dressing … or we like butter on bread. Unsalted butter, at least it’s free of additives unlike margarine. There was a book called ‘Margarine (the Plastic Fat) and Your Heart Attack‘, I won’t go into that any further. Yeah, so it can be vegetable oils, butter on bread, cream on salad dressing or … coconut fat’s quite a good one, because it’s very saturated some authorities believe it’s bad for you, but there’s a fair amount of evidence that because coconut fat does not form fat on our thighs and belly, it goes straight to the liver where it can be burned for energy. So coconut fat has a different molecule from beef fat and that does seem to make all the difference, our bodies can use coconut oil.
Roger: Yeah, so it’s liquid in summer and a solid in winter so it’s fat and oil alternatively. So they’re the main categories of food, a lot of fresh fruits and veggies for their vitamins, they’re other antioxidants, their minerals … a whole lot of minerals apart from potassium, calcium, magnesium, their fiber and … in lettuce, for example, there’s about 1,000 nutrients so there’s a vast number of things that just don’t rate as the common nutrients that we know well. So a lot of fresh fruits and veggies, a modest amount of protein food, preferably plant-based, a modest amount of carbohydrates … carbohydrates … grain foods tend to be heating in summer, we’re actually better to use those in winter rather than summer.
Roger: The starchy veggies are fine, and modest amounts of dried fruit are a sugary concentrate … we can concentrate our fresh fruits, normally grapes, into dried fruit, and that is like nature’s lollies really. We don’t need dried fruit but it’s nice, and in very small amounts it’s fine, like maybe 60 grams a day, otherwise we can upset our blood sugar level. And then the concentrated sweeteners, again that we don’t need, but are really nice on our foods, honey, maple syrup … oh, things like that basically.
Patrick: Okay, so is there particular vegetables that you appreciate above others? You know, some people talk about the super foods.
Roger: There’s a few that jump out, Patrick. One of them in broccoli and the other cruciferous family members, cabbage, cauliflower, brussel sprouts … I don’t like those, sadly, but certainly love broccoli etc. These vegetable contain sulforaphane which not only doesn’t cause cancer, it destroys cancer cells. They actually destroy cancer cells if they’re present, so they are remarkable vegetables. Now it so happens that when they’re cooked the sulforaphane is destroyed, so if they’re very lightly cooked you will get a bit of the benefit of both worlds. They’re more palatable, they’re raw and they have their effect. We have a great way of using them where they’re completely raw and it’s not like crunching into a head of broccoli, which wouldn’t entertain me particularly.
Roger: We … the wife and I make a chopped salad where we chop up vegetable pieces into bits like that, so it’s not pureed but can be eating with a spoon, very easy to eat, mix them together. And we have lettuce in it, we have rocket, we have silver beet, English spinach, any or all of those. We have some greens, we have the fruit vegetables which are the ones with seeds, tomato, cucumber, capsicum, they’re still vegetables but technically they’re fruits. Tomato is so high in that … and capsicum, so high in that lycopene, a powerful antioxidant, that men who eat a lot of tomatoes or even tomato sauce have 40 per cent less risk of prostate cancer. So just one example of one of many of these super nutrients in the vegetables and fruits.
Roger: Then we have … the most common stem vegetable is celery, so I have celery in about every salad, basically. Asparagus is the other common stem vegetable but we go for celery because that’s readily available. And then come the root vegetables carrot and beetroot. Beetroot’s technically a stem but we refer to it as a root vegetable. And in our salad we actually … because I don’t like chewing big chunky bits, we actually put them in a food processor, and we put the broccoli in as well and the silver beet. We’ve still got plenty of bulky salad so we’re not eating a slush. We puree them up to a degree, or just up to a fairly fine level, mix them in with the rest and we have a really good salad, and we’re getting those super nutrients without them being destroyed by cooking and without having to chew into great handfuls of raw broccoli.
Roger: So that’s out salad every night. We would eat up to half a kilo a night, typically 400 grams, maybe we can munch our way through a 500 gram salad. And that is a real insurance against a lot of health problems.
Patrick: Realizing it’s mostly water.
Roger: And then the fresh fruits, the fresh fruits are similar, they’re very high in antioxidants. You go with the season with the fruits, which is why they’re …when they’re green nature’s telling us they’re not nice, don’t eat ’em, when they’re ripe they’re delicious. Green paw-paw is, and I know Asia can use green paw-paw, I only want it when it’s ripe and sweet and delicious. And it’s a beautiful food, and that yellowy-orange color is the carotenoids, as in beta-carotene, alpha, beta, gamma, delta-carotene, super nutrients. Peaches also have those same nutrients. Paw-paw and papaya are basically summer foods but we can get them all year round and their ripe. Bananas, again, are all year round. Bananas are very high in potassium, they’re about 16-18 per cent carbohydrate which is compared to apples, which is one per cent, they’re quite high in energy food.
Roger: Well balanced for the alkaline minerals, especially potassium, and they are a good food, I would probably eat one every day. But make sure it’s ripe, if a banana is ripe the fruit will be full, it won’t be angular and stunted. Picked as a teenager it’ll be a full fruit, there’ll be no green on the skin at all, even right under the stem will be all yellow, and when you flick the stem it just falls off. Nature says I’m ready to eat and that’s a perfect banana, which is about 18 per cent sugar and one per cent starch, highly digestible. Whereas when they’re raw, they’re the other way round, mostly starch.
Patrick: Okay, so if you have some trouble to open your banana you did it too early?
Roger: It’s not ripe, it’s still too starchy, yep. In summer, the fruits of the gods to me are mangoes.
Patrick: Yeah, I love mangoes.
Roger: I’ll eat mangoes every day in my fruit salads, and again when they’re ripe, they’re soft. You can tell when they’re ripe just because they give a little bit, you don’t bruise them. I love … in summer I love a fruit salad as I had for lunchtime today, mango, banana and cherries, and/or strawberries, and/or blueberries. You know, blueberries are the richest of the fruits in anthocyanins and pro-anthocyanidins, which are antioxidants more people than vitamin C by 15 to 40 times. They are incredibly beneficial for us.
Roger: Yeah, so go for those blueberries. The other red and blue and purple berries have the same, blueberries, bilberries, boysenberries, strawberries, raspberries, cranberries, all those berries have these powerful nutrients. Red apples have them, cherries, those dark cherries have them in a big way, magic, you know, delicious fruits that are so good for us.
Patrick: There was always just something with onions, wasn’t there, the red onions and the white onions and there’s a difference in those two?
Roger: The purple onions have the anthocyanins, yep, and so do beetroot, so do plums, I didn’t mention, and so do eggplant. Eggplant is the richest but you gotta eat the black part just under the skin and then you get the benefit of those nutrients. So they are very powerful nutrients in basically the berries, cherries, plums, red apples, grapes … interestingly, if you juice red or black grapes, the juice will be white, but when they make red wine they use the skins and they get the anthocyanins in the red wine. So the little guide … although we have to do the right and proper thing and say that alcohol does put a load on the liver, so we don’t really need it, but if we like a little drink then make it red wine, then at least you’ve got some benefit to offset the problems with the alcohol.
Roger: So red wine is definitely the best of the alcohols.
Patrick: Alright, wonderful. Now I know you’ve got some views on, I think, activity, stress, meditation …
Roger: Yeah. It’s hard to imagine a body working properly without regular physical activity. That regular physical activity, the aerobic kind, increases the heart rate, which pumps more blood around the body which oxygenates the tissues more, which sweeps away waste and is a subtle detox process. So regular physical activity every day is really critical to our bodies functioning normally, they are designed for activity. Now, we don’t have to be Olympic athletes, in fact Olympic athletes have a lot of oxidation in their bodies from that level of activity … we’re better off without, that is not a healthy amount of activity. What we need is something like half an hour’s brisk walking every day or six days a week, just brisk walking, half an hour will do the trick. If it’s running or swimming or dancing, or those very vigorous activities, maybe 20 or 30 minutes every second day would be sufficient.
Roger: So walking, which is milder, would need to be most days of the week. And if we are feeling unwell, then don’t soldier on, we’re just squandering nerve energy. If we’re not feeling energetic, rest. Our bodies are telling us what to do and they know what to do, rest. But if we’re feeling energetic, then get out and use some of it. Not all of it, leave some for our brains which use a huge amount of energy. So that’s regular physical activity, there are many kinds, there’s walking, there’s bounce … the most convenient of all activities is bouncing on one of those mini trampolines. It’s so convenient, you can even do it in your home in a few minutes without changing your clothes, you won’t get sweaty in a couple of minutes.
Roger: Otherwise, while you’re listening to some favorite music or watch television, perish the thought, bounce on a rebound or jog on a rebound in your running gear for 20 or 30 minutes, that is excellent exercise. Space research showed the top of the bounce you got zero gravity, the bottom it’s about maybe three times, and that is really good for our bodies, it flushes lymph around the system and drains the waste from every cell in the body.
Patrick: Okay, interesting.
Roger: Physical activity, yep, good stuff.
Patrick: Alright, what about stress?
Roger: Stress is probably the most dominant negative aspect of our lifestyles. Whereas we can change our eating if we want to, just like that, but stress is not something you can switch off. There’s a lot of stress with the pressure of meeting deadlines at work, with the pressure of getting work, with the pressure of performing at work, with the pressure of relationships at times. With the pressures of time and the pressure of fitting everything in, with the pressure of coping with computers, the pressure of coping with techno-stress, which is being on the computer having the phone go and then you’re …
Roger: Multi-tasking, yep, yep. So we’re in the age of stress. If … once we recognize stress and realize that it is not worth letting it destroy our bodies when we can just switch certain things off. And we can certainly tone down our reaction to stress through various techniques, yoga is one of the best. It so happens my wife loves yoga and does a lot of it, I don’t, too slow for me and I don’t seem to do it very well. Meditation is another major one, it’s … even the Beatles immortalized when they did that transcendental meditation, that’s the slow one.
Roger: I use a meditation for maybe a couple of minutes twice a day, where you just sit comfortably, close your eyes in a quiet place, doesn’t matter if there’s noise in the background, and bring into view … mentally into view the pressures of the chair on your backside or the floor on your feet and the clothing all over your skin. You can feel that but you’re not conscious of it, but become conscious of it and feel these pressures, then feel the air going into your nose and down your windpipe, track it down, and then listen. Note all the sounds coming into your ears, so people listening to my voice, there’d be other sounds. So just sit comfortably and with practice bring all these things in view together, and then your mind will be totally in the present moment.
Roger: And whereas a writer, who wrote the book ‘Meditate, Rejuvenate’, said that most of us are carrying around two heavy suitcases all night long, one is full of guilt and regrets about the past, the other one’s full of worries and fears about the future. With meditation you wipe those out, at least for that short time, and research has shown that if we do that a couple of times a day, and I said my meditation takes a couple of minutes, it is so practical for busy and non-busy people, and do it before meals on an empty stomach rather than a full one, then our bodies tend to be calmer all day long. And in fact, you tend to live through the day being more aware of what’s around you all the time instead of being focused in what’s in your mind, what problems are in your mind. So by bringing the body, the mind into the present moment, which is the basis of meditation … nothing to do with religion, this is a straight, mechanical process for calming the mind, then it has enormous benefits. We think better, we’re calmer and it does tend to ease stress.
Roger: There are stress management courses, they’re good, various organizations run stress management. And exercise itself, go for a … is a stress breaker, go for a walk around a couple of blocks in the morning for 20 minutes, walk with a good friend, have a good chat and double the benefit, because talking is good therapy, look at me.
Patrick: Can I ask … I don’t know if that’s a rude question to ask, how old are you?
Roger: Well, once you’re over 70 you don’t have an age. So I was born in 1940, which make me 78.
Patrick: Alright, that’s wonderful.
Roger: 78 and a couple.
Patrick: Alright, now you wrote a book some time ago which is a fascinating read, would you mind just elaborating on it?
Roger: It had to be done … yeah, there’s the proof, that’s me on the back. It had to be done, How A Man Lived In Three Centuries. One of the foundation members of the Natural Health Society, Eric Storm, who was a Mosman, Sydney, stockbroker, collapsed with a heart attack at 34 years of age with his doctor warning if you don’t mend your ways with your smoking and drinking, you won’t live ling enough to tell the tale. Well, he happened to bump into the founder of Natural Health in Australia, he found Hope and founded the Natural Health Society of Australia. He said look, I’ve been through the mill myself, I’ve got to 40, now that I’ve discovered lifestyle I never know how well you could be, you can do it as well. So Eric Storm did exactly what he was told, not only did he not die within five years, because in 1930 when he had the heart attack there’s no intensive care, heart attacks were very rare in those days and you were lucky to live five years. He died in February, 2000, at the age of 104 completely free of plaque in his arteries.
Patrick: That’s helpful.
Roger: So that was a spectacular achievement, and somebody said Roger, you’ve gotta write the book. So my life’s natural health work went into How A Man Lived In Three Centuries, The Complete Guide To Natural Health, and we say at the top, heart attack at 34, fit and well to 104. And it was the ultimate case story, I’ve seen dozens and dozens and dozens of case stories, especially when I worked at Hopewood, and put a whole lot of case stories into chapter 19, which are fascinating reading-
Roger: This one is the top of the pile. What he achieved is absolutely amazing, and when he died and I visited him on his deathbed, he had no disease. He has a tumor somewhere but the doc said that’s nothing to do with his health, he had died of old age. And as he said to the people around him, and he had quite a big audience at times, he said I’ve achieved everything I wanted to do in life, I’m ready to go. So this book lays out, it’s really … Eric Storm’s story is just a thread running through it. It lays out the whole of natural health in detail.
Roger: Three chapters on nutrition, what’s wrong with modern foods, how to have a balanced diet and a whole lot of little points, and why plant-based. It covers stress and how to deal with it and how to get to sleep at night without drugs, it covers regular physical activity, the benefits, the different kinds. It covers minimizing exposure to man-made chemicals which is incredibly important. There’s a full chapter on your field, Patrick, avoiding exposure to radiation.
Roger: Which is not as complete as if I’d known you in the beginning, but it covers the guts of it.
Roger: And then we go into sunshine, safe use of sunshine, proper breathing, how to detoxify the body, self-healing. And that’s a critically important chapter because we can all do self-healing bouts at home, juice diets et cetera, and then it goes into the fully documented causes and reversal of arthritis and rheumatism. And then with heart disease the same thing, fully documented the causes, the mechanism and reversal of heart disease and stroke. Not always reversible but there’s a lot we can do and they’re very preventable. And finally, the causes of cancer and how we might remove those causes and facilitate the body’s self-healing. Some cancers people won’t recover from but there’ve been plenty of cases where people have by knowing what to do.
Roger: And finally case stories, and then Eric Storm’s rounds off. And I do say to people if you read chapter one, you want to keep reading because the way you give yourself the indulgent lifestyle that you have to give yourself at 34 makes you green with envy, except it kills you in the end. It reads like fiction, and absolutely fascinating story.
Patrick: Okay, well it sounds like wonderful reading, it sounds like a must have on the bookshelf and to work your way through.
Roger: And Patrick I must say that this book is not me, I’m the agent who put this information to writing but I was taught it by the early fathers and mothers of all this, and I simply, with my engineering training which taught me to recognize fact from fiction, with my diploma in nutrition, enables me to read medical research and know what I’m talking about, I was able to write the book and know what works. And I’m a very practical chap, too.
Patrick: Okay. If people wanted a copy where would they best go?
Roger: Um, look on our website, health.org.au, phone us in the office, it’s easy done with a credit card over the phone for a mere 27 dollars including postage.
Patrick: That’s within Australia of course, outside would need a little more.
Roger: Yep, within Australia. 02 4721 5068, that’s New South Wales, 4721 5068, or email email@example.com.
Patrick: And for the phone number for those overseas, of course 61 is Australia’s country identifier number, and then 2 and then the rest.
Roger: +61 2 4721 5068.
Patrick: Okay, great.
Roger: A book that could save your life.
Patrick: Alright Roger, thank you very much for your time today and sharing that with us and … it was fascinating, thank you very much.
Roger: Thank you Patrick, my pleasure and I hope we’ve done some good for people.
Patrick: I think we have, thank you.
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Here are some notes and links associated to what was mentioned in this podcast
- The Natural Health Society
- Phone to order the book ‘How A Man Lived In Three Centuries‘: +61 2 4721 5068.
- Kindle version of the book